NASCAR gives clues to 2013 Commodore

30 November 2012
, CarsGuide

The Chevrolet NASCAR unveiled in Las Vegas overnight has given Australian car buyers their biggest clue yet to the appearance of the new-look Holden Commodore due next year.

The NASCAR clearly shows the Commodore will adopt a sleeker look in its headlights and grille, and a pronounced bulge in its bonnet. The Commodore looks like it is also poised to adopt front fender vents similar to some Jaguar models -- and the Holden Special Vehicles performance car brand.

The tail-lights will be larger than those illustrated on the NASCAR (they're stickers, not functional) and the bootlid will have a similar edge to it as the BMW 7 Series. "We are not going to discuss any more details on the Holden Commodore or the Chevrolet SS today," said the former boss of Holden Mark Reuss, now the boss of General Motors in North America, who unveiled the car in Las Vegas this morning.

"We will show you the road car at Daytona speed week [in late February]. You will have to wait until then." That means Australian car buyers will get to see the new Holden Commodore four months before production at Adelaide is due to commence, giving Holden dealers the added headache of selling a car when buyers know a new model is around the corner.

But at least Australians will be first to get behind the wheel. The Holden Commodore is due to return to North America as a Chevrolet in the second half of 2013, a few months after it arrives in Australian showrooms. In North America, it will be sold as a V8-only "Performance SS" model. Holden, meanwhile, will reduce the variety of Commodore models it offers in the new line-up, giving preference to sports and luxury versions.

General Motors has not confirmed what engine will power the export version, but it is expected to have the same 6.2-litre LS3 V8 fitted to the Corvette sports car and the HSV vehicles sold in Australia. The Commodore was first sold in North America between 2007 and 2009 but the export deal collapsed after General Motors folded the Pontiac brand in the wake of the Global Financial Crisis.

GM thinks the Commodore will have a better chance at export success the second time around because Chevrolet is a more high profile brand and it has a stronger dealer network.